Research & Development: R&D Program Annual Panel Peer Review
Department of Transportation (DOT) Operating Agencies (OA) are implementing a systematic process for peer review addressing all influential and highly influential information that the OA plans to disseminate in the �foreseeable� future.
Through the Information Quality Act, Congress directed Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to "provide policy and procedural guidance to Federal agencies for ensuring and maximizing the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of information, (including statistical information) disseminated by Federal agencies." A resulting OMB Bulletin entitled, �Final Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review� was issued prescribing required procedures for Federal programs.
The Office of the Secretary of Transportation (OST) produced procedures governing modal implementation of this OMB Bulletin. These procedures, as well as the OMB Bulletin, serve as the basis and justification for the PHMSA Pipeline Safety R&D Program peer reviews.
Peer reviews are intended to uncover any technical problems or unsolved issues in a scientific work product through the use of technically competent and independent (objective) experts. Peer review of a major scientific work product that will have the imprimatur of the Federal Government needs to be incorporated into the upfront planning of any action based in the work product. This includes obtaining the proper resources commitments (reviewers and funds) then establishing realistic schedules.
While addressing program strategy, a systematic evaluation process was designed and implemented for raising and validating program quality. The process contains five steps and follows research projects from their inception to result implementation. Each step of this systematic process ensures that project outcomes will be of high quality, relevant to the mission of PHMSA and applied to the appropriate end users.
Keeping within this collaborative process, PHMSA will hold annual peer reviews on all post-award or active research projects. This action ensures that quality is addressed throughout the lifecycle of research (pre-solicitation, pre-award, and post-award). These projects must stay true to the goals conceived in consensus at R&D Forums and as promised by researchers receiving the government research award. If projects deviate they are adjusted or modified using the feedback from peer review panels.
Interested in becoming a peer review panelist? Have any comments on our process? Do you have a question PHMSA could ask on one of our active projects for an upcoming review? Send us some feedback.